From my observations there are two distinct thought processes that flow through most peoples’ heads. On one hand, there are those that seem to first look at any situation through their “feeling” lens. On the other hand, there are those that put far more logic into their first thoughts. I am sure there are also plenty who regularly use a blend of these two processes, but in the main I now intend to put my thoughts into each end of this spectrum.
This piece is being written from a lay persons point of view, with no professional knowledge or experience, but one who has taken note of human behavior over many decades. As a society we often refer to those in our communities who are considered to be “artistic”, and there is no doubt that most people in this category are inclined to look at most situations with their heart first. That means that they mainly use their feelings when making many decisions. While logical thinking will be used during such a thought process, their feelings will usually dictate their final decision.
Without trying to put anybody into a particular box, there appears to be enough evidence to suggest that those of us who are proficient at music, art, writing and other creative pursuits could be considered as being artistic, and therefore they are often those who use their hearts more than their heads. They react to most situations according to how they feel about the particular subject or problem. Such people are inclined to be sensitive to their surroundings, whether it be other people or their environment. Are such people aware of their thought processes and how they often differ to others? Would they even wish to curtail their feelings somewhat and inject more logic into their thinking?
Those that are inclined to use their heads (logic) are somewhat different. They often have extreme difficulty in understanding where the creative (artistic) person is coming from. Such differences can often end up causing an argument, with neither party understanding the other. My own family has always had a mixture of these two major groups and, while they may get on reasonably well, in private they often vent their frustration in trying to deal with the other party. Unfortunately, logical thinkers often find it hard to understand what putting ones feelings well ahead of common sense is all about. My father used regularly say, “The most uncommon thing in this world is common sense”, and as I get older I certainly can see where he was coming from.
Perhaps I should declare my own position in this discussion, but I assume by now you would have guessed. I consider myself to be a logical thinker, where common sense should always prevail. In fact, my wife thinks I am far too “hard” and that I should soften up a bit. Though to be quite honest, my wife thinks that many modern world societies are becoming far too soft, and that they should harden up. I must admit that I am getting softer as I get older, but I am resisting moving too far into that other camp. I have even found myself starting to cry on occasions where normally such a thing, for me anyway, would be unthinkable.
Modern western societies are changing, and while this may be a strange thing to say, they are moving towards using the heart far more than the head. Some would say that this has something to do with the influence that women are having on the thinking and outlook of the general public in this modern world. While some may accuse me of being sexist, I believe that the natural softer, maternal instincts of women are now influencing what men think. This strong influence would not have had much effect many years ago as most women could not, or did not, greatly affect how society generally thought. The modern western world is becoming somewhat feminized and, whether we like it or not, women generally are softer in their thinking than men. This means that they often think more with their heart than their head. I do not intend to comment on the benefits or otherwise of this trend, it is just my assessment of what is occurring.
This trend is continuing and where it will end up is anybody’s guess. If one considers the thinking in the other 80 percent of the world, in other words those societies that are not experiencing such changes, I am not sure that this trend would be welcomed. One of the major bones of contention between some religions, societies and countries around the world revolve around the relationships, positions and power between men and women. Some governments even dictate what these relationships should be, and how they should work in their society.
Now that I have somewhat stirred up the pot somewhat, I will just add a few concluding comments. While there are those that are inclined to use mainly one side of this spectrum or the other, perhaps the most sensible solution is for each side to try to see the views of the other, before making any hard and fast stands. A caring solution on one hand laced with a strong measure of logic may be the answer. From my experience this is an extremely hard compromise for either party to accept, particularly when they are often on the opposite extremes of the argument. So, as a reader, where do you consider yourself to be? Are you lead by your head, or your heart?